Romano: 22-year-old star “ready to join Arsenal” as Gunners prepare fresh offer
Arsenal are preparing a fresh offer for Houssem Aouar and the £55m-rated Lyon midfielder is ready to move to North London if a deal is agreed between the two clubs, according to Fabrizio Romano via the Daily Star.
Mikel Arteta is hoping to overhaul his midfield before the transfer window closes on October 5th and Aouar has been identified as one of Arsenal’s prime targets along with Atletico Madrid star Thomas Partey.
Lyon director Juninho has already confirmed earlier this month that he’s held talks with Arsenal counterpart Edu about Aouar but insisted the Ligue 1 outfit weren’t interested in taking Matteo Guendouzi as part of any deal.
This came off the back of a report by RMC Sport that claimed Arsenal had seen an opening bid for Aouar rejected by Lyon after offering £31.4m plus Guendouzi in exchange the 22-year-old playmaker.
Arsenal’s offer fell short of Lyon’s £55m valuation but Italian reporter Fabrizio Romano claims the Londoners are set to go back in with an improved bid and Aouar is ‘ready to join Arsenal’ if a deal can be agreed.
Romano suggests that the French U21 international wants to test himself in the Premier League at Arsenal but Arteta may need to sell the likes of Sead Kolasinac, Sokratis and Lucas Torreira to help fund the move.
Speaking on the Here We Go podcast, Romano is quoted by the Daily Star as saying:
“Obviously the club that is working to sign Aouar is Arsenal. We have to say that Arsenal are convinced that if they could sell some players, and they have many in [Sead] Kolasinac, Sokratis [Papastathopoulos] and [Lucas] Torreira, many players to sell or loan out in the last two weeks, they can try again for Aouar.
“Lyon are asking for €60million (£55m), so it’s complicated but the player would be ready to join the Premier League, would be ready to join Arsenal.
“The player would like to come to the Premier League and to join Arsenal but for now there are no negotiations. In July, they offered Guendouzi as part of the deal and they didn’t find an agreement.
“Now it’s up to Arsenal if they sell players, I am convinced [they will make another offer].”
Italian journalist Nicolo Schira claimed recently that Arsenal have already agreed personal terms with Aouar over a five-year contract so all that remains if for a deal to be agreed with Lyon and the move should be wrapped-up swiftly.
Aouar would be an excellent addition to Arteta’s squad as he scored 9 goals and provided a further 10 assists in all competitions last year so he’d certainly offer some much-needed creativity for Arsenal in the middle of the park.
However, it remains to be seen whether Arsenal are able to strike a deal with Lyon as the French club are notoriously tough to negotiate with and finances are clearly tight at the Emirates Stadium this summer.
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